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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Birth of Adrian Christopher (vba2c)

     My induction was scheduled for Fri, Aug 26, at 5:00. We had decided to induce because of his size (estimated 8lb14oz 2 weeks before) and the fact that I was positive I was 8 days ahead of the official due date. At my Tuesday appointment I was 1-2 cm and 60-70% effaced and was hoping I had made progress.
     I went to my Fri appointment at 2:45 and had my final biophysical profile. Everything looked good and I went to do my NST. After a few minutes on the monitor, I got a phone call. It was one of the doctors from L&D and they wanted me to come in early. They said to have the nurse take me off the monitor and to come right to L&D. I was disappointed, as I hadn't eaten and wanted to get dinner before we started. I grabbed an apple and scarfed it down on the way over.
     Because of my previous c-sections, we couldn't use Cervidil or Cytotec because of the risk of uterine rupture so we had decided to try a Foley Bulb induction. Basically, they insert a foley catheter tube into the cervix, and inflate the balloon to manually dilate me to 3 cm or so and then it would fall out. The plan was to leave it in overnight, and start pitocin at 8 am. We got there, filled out paperwork and consents, and I got into my gown, started my i.v. and they put me on the monitor. They came in and checked me and I was the same as Tue, 1cm and 60-70% effaced. They inserted the Foley Bulb and it wasn't too bad, but as soon as the balloon was inflated, I felt intense pressure and had back to back strong contractions, almost on top of each other. A little over an hour later, after constant contractions I asked to go to the bathroom. I was told I was not allowed up and could use a bedpan. When I used the bedpan, the Foley Bulb popped out and I couldn't stop going. I also felt this incredible relief from the pressure and contractions. I wondered if my water had broken. The dr checked me and my water was indeed broken, and I was dilated to a 4. They immediately started i.v. antibiotics as I was GBS+. I was excited. Things seemed to be progressing quickly.
     I continued to contract throughout the night and after my water was broken they were very intense and painful. The dr's wouldn't check me as my membranes were ruptured and they didn't want to risk infection. By 1 am I was in so much pain I finally caved and asked for an epidural. I had previously said I didn't want one, but I will never again think less of someone for getting one! My spinals with my c-sections were so bad I was terrified, but it was almost painless (probably because I was distracted by the contractions). After getting the epidural, I was able to sleep a little though I didn't get much rest because baby's heart rate kept dropping and I had to wear an oxygen mask and lie on my left side. I had this witchy nurse who told me I would have to start an insulin drip and glucose drip once the Pitocin was started. I told her, I had already discussed this with my dr and that he said I could keep my insulin pump and continuous glucose monitor and not have the drips. He had said I could manage my own blood sugars and not be on an ADA diet since I eat lower carb than their recommendations. She said we would see about that.
     At 8 am, Dr. Baker came in and checked me. I was 4-5 cm, hardly any progress for all the pain! So glad I got the epi. I asked about keeping my pump and cgm and he said no problem. The nurse didn't say anything. The started the Pitocin and within an hour or so I was at 7 cm, and 100% effaced. After another hour I was at 9 and at -1. By this point my epidural had stopped working on my left side, but nobody acted like they believed me. I felt every contraction but only on the left. Around 1 they checked me and I was complete and +1 and was told I could start pushing soon. I was really excited and ready to go. A few minutes later the dr. comes in and says he wants to wait until I am at +2. I was so disappointed. It wasn't long though that I was checked again and told I was at +2. One of the residents came in and said we would start pushing. I was freaking out at this point because Matt had gone outside thinking we had plenty of time. I called him and he was just down the hall thank goodness. The dr told me to go ahead and push. I gave a good push and she's like "stop"! She gets on the phone and tells Dr Baker if he wants to deliver me he better get in there.
     Dr. Baker comes in with a bunch of other dr's (later I found out various years of residents and med students). I guess vba2c is pretty rare and they wanted to watch. They had me wait til the very peak of a contraction and then push. This was crazy hard as I had this incredible urge to push and pushing made the pain better. After a couple rounds of pushing someone told me to reach down and touch my baby's head. It was the most surreal experience. A couple more pushes and he was out! They let me lift him up on my chest and I immediately started bawling. I couldn't believe I was holding my baby and I had actually done it! I got my vbac. I really didn't think it was going to happen until he was actually out. The dr had gone on about how big the baby was and how he might get stuck. I prayed over and over for God to please not let me rupture and to protect my baby. They let Matt cut the cord and I got to snuggle with Adrian for an hour before they took him. I was so thrilled. The dr's and nurses were taking bets on how big he was. Everyone said over 9lb. He was 8lb12oz (2 oz less than the estimate 2 weeks before!) and 21.5 inches long. I did tear pretty badly. It was only 2nd degree but I tore every which way. It took over an hour to stitch me up and the dr told me he had never used that many sutures on a repair. I didn't care though. I was on a high. It was the most amazing experience of my life.
     I am so grateful that I got this experience. I really feel like I got the healing birth that I longed for. Just about every nurse commented on my "extensive repair" and asked if I wish I had just gotten the c-section. I say most definitely not! The difference in recovery is like night and day. I was feeling great and up and around in a couple hours. I was eating and wearing my own pajamas. We are now 3 days post partum and things are going great! He nurses like a pro and I am recovering well. We did have to stay 48 hours because my water had been broken for so long and I was GBS+ but everything was fine. Adrian and Daddy are already good buddies.  Matt can get him to stop crying every time.
* Edited to add in:  my blood sugars stayed between 70-125 the entire time and Adrian did not have any low blood sugars as I was told he would (haha).


Angel said...

This made me cry i am so happy for you Allison! i know how bad you wanted this! i am so glad you and Adrian are doing great! Love the pictures! <3!

Cori said...

Sounds a lot like Emma's birth story. Well, mine wasn't a VBAC. BUt her HR kept dropping and I had O2 and had to stay on my right side. My epi wore off on one side too and NO ONE believed me! I remember when you came to visit me in the hospital you were like "I can't believe you are up walking!" I'm glad you were able to experience that! He is "practically perfect in every way" and I am sure my Diana is such a wonderful big sister! Congrats my lady!

Jennifer L. said...

Yippee! Vbac2c in a hospital is a big deal--a great accomplishment, especially given the red-dot of diabetes on the top of the folder (even though there aren't real red-dots, having any kind of thing beforehand puts one at risk for a repeat cesarean). Hooray! I am so happy for you and happy that Adrian is doing well!

I can't believe the nurses would have asked if you would have rather had a cesarean given the tearing--whatever!! Some tearing down there seems like ripped paper compared to major abdominal surgery. Hello?!! What are they thinking? While I am certain it can't really feel nice, at least you can probably laugh, sneeze or cough without worrying that your incision is going to burst or something not so pleasant to think about! Hooray for no incision!

I've heard two good VBAC stories this week--it makes me want to dance around the room. Go mama! It is a right of passage that we all deserve to experience (if the stars align just so!). Congratulations again!

Allison said...

Thanks everyone!

Tik said...

What a lovely birth story! What a joy to have such a healing birth after TWO C-sections!